Sabri Lamouchi admitted he had made a mistake after seeing his Nottingham Forest side suffer a painful 1-0 home defeat to struggling Charlton.
The Reds head coach made five changes to the team that beat Leeds 2-0 at the weekend and, while he said that three of those were enforced through injury, Lamouchi felt that he had tinkered too much.
Lewis Grabban, Samba Sow and Sammy Ameobi were all ruled out with minor injury problems, but Forest also left Matty Cash and Yuri Ribeiro out of the starting XI.
Lamouchi admitted that might have altered their dynamic, as Lyle Taylor’s goal earned Charlton three precious points – and a first away win since August.
“The best team won. We gave them one chance in the first half and they scored. We did not create a lot. It was a bad performance. It was probably my mistake,” said Lamouchi.
“Grabban did not play because he had a problem in his knee, like Samba Sow and Sammy Ameobi. (Leaving out) Cashy and Yuri was a mistake. Not because of who played instead, but because we did not keep the dynamic we had.
“This was absolutely different to a few days ago (when Forest beat Leeds). There was no rhythm, no fight and not the same spirit. We made a lot of mistakes. We played slowly. Charlton played well and deserved to win. The best team won tonight.
“This was my mistake. I changed things because we have a lot of games. We did not want to take a risk with anyone today. But I take responsibility, absolutely.
“This was completely different to a few days ago. A bad performance, a bad result and, one more time, a big opportunity missed.”
Lee Bowyer also felt that the best team had won – and was understandably delighted to see his side increase the gap between them and the bottom three to six points.
“We had not won away since August, but that sounds worse that the situation actually is. We picked up a lot of injuries. That is why that happened. We have been in every game, largely,” said Bowyer.
“But this puts us three points closer to the target we need. People had written us off and said that we were going to go down. I have said all along that I believe in this group of players. They will keep fighting, I know that. I will keep pushing them.
“With our fans behind us, I know we have a good group here, and a good chance. There are 14 or 15 games left and there will be twists and turns. There are teams above us who will get sucked into it, I believe that.
“This was a great team performance, everyone worked so hard. But now we have to move on to Saturday and a home game against Blackburn. We have to maintain this standard and work rate.
“Forest are a good side. Not many teams have taken four points from them this season, particularly when it comes to getting three points here.
“The only criticism I have is that we should have won by more.”
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